Arts & Leisure

The Review: Cheuoe by Yemba Shungu featuring Phephela

Chris Theko

This week The Review takes a listen to Cheuoe, a track by Yemba Shungu featuring Phephela.  This is a single from a series of singles he has been dropping for the past year. The tune was released on the 27 August 2021.

The song was produced by one of the top producers, Vibeboy Beats. Cheuoe has a time elapse of 4 minutes 12 seconds, built on 100-beats-per-minute (BPM) and laid on an 8/8-time signature.

The instrumental arrangement of the song heavily kept the identity of Jenuine Hype records with the similarity evident on the percussions, the piano with a clear trap influence.

Not only did he drop the song but a few days later he dropped the music video. The song features Phephela who is an artist famous for trending singing ‘Mangae’ Sesotho praise songs but was soon brought to the mainstream by Ntate Stunna to release a song called ‘Kea Patlotsa’. 

Yemba Shungu took a much laid-back approach to the song, clearly influenced by trap music. The beat of the song has a chilled vibe with percussions shadowing consistent chord vibrations. 

What I love about the lyrics is the use of Sesotho although Shungu is predominantly English and French-speaking. He mainly stuck to Sesotho with bits of code-switching to the English language. 

On the surface the lyrics of the track are about him the consistency he has been showing over the years, how he has been that one rapper being watched by others. 

There is the downside to the song though; the hype is about Shungu featuring Phephela however, the latter is not given as much of chance and time to express himself in his Phephela-way. He comes in very briefly in one short verse with lines at times unclear.

In any case, the 20 seconds of his part are worth paying attention to because as usual he has some ill praises. 

When Shungu comes through with the hook, he interchanges between melodic singings aided by auto tune. 

Some people say Hip Hop is dead but clearly not as long as Shungu has a saying on that. The creativity is on point and is matched by the collaboration of the two individuals who are well talented on their own. 

So far this has a potential of a classic but only time will tell. Cheuoe rates at 7 out of 10

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